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Discussion Starter #1
has anyone ever added a 7 pin trailer plug? if so did you do it or have it done? also if you did it was it able to be plugged in somehow to other pigtails.looking for any info on this.the 7 pin has 1 line that is to charge the 12 volt battery on the teardrop camper.any thing would be apreciated.thanks
 

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'11 Outback 2.5i CVT - '06 Forester X 5MT
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Never done it, but here is the route I would take.

Adapter 4 Pole to 7 Pole Vehicle End Trailer Connector Tow Ready Wiring 30717

Use the OEM 4 pin for basic signal light functions then run a dedicated fused 12v power to the accessory wire on the 7 pin. You'll want a dedicated line to supply enough current.

This will make the turn signal wiring plug and play, and still leave you with a 4 pin plug for any other trailers you might tow.

Not sure if you'll be installing a brake controller or have any need for the other 2 pins, but if so you'll have them available. If, not you might want to consider a 6 Pole connector instead. Of course if you trailer already has a 7 pole then go that route ;)
 

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2012 Outback 3.6R
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511 Posts
When you run the dedicated 12 power wire from the battery I recommend you run an additional wire that could be used for an electric brake controller wire. May not be needed now but an easy thing to do now and you never know what is in your future. Use #12 or #10 wires I used #10 when I did my 2012 Outback.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
the little teardrop will have a 7 wire plug.i am not familiar with having a battery on a trailer that charges off vehicle.apparently what im getting is there is not a 7 pin that is plug and play.if i do 4 pin plug and play and a 4 to 7 pin adapter do i run the # 10 wire direct from battery post to one of the pins on the 7 pin end of adapter somehow?
 

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2007 Outback XT Ltd
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There is no such thing as a plug and play 7 pin setup, since the heavy wiring does not exist in your car. You have to install it, and that means a good deal of work and sweat.

If this is Greek to you, it would be best to have a pro wire your car, but it is definitely easy to run a couple of heavy gauge (10 AWG or bigger, one blue, one red) wires from near the battery to the rear of the car. Leave a lot of extra wire at each end so there is no problem doing the final installation. If your trailer will have backup lights, you can run an extra small purple wire for them, to splice into the car backup light circuit in back.

I really like this receptacle better than the one linked above ... http://www.amazon.com/Flagline-47185-Hopkins-Multi-Tow-Adapter/dp/B0002Q80GS/ref=cm_cr-mr-title ... Regardless of what connector you buy, be sure to pick a plastic version. The plated steel ones are dangerous - they will corrode and eventually short out the pins internally.

The real problem is figuring out where to mount it. You can't just let it dangle. It needs to be secure andf accessible, but not vulnerable to being scraped off by a bump in the road. I haven't wired up my Gen 3 OB yet, but I plan to someday. I just don't know where to put the darn socket...

Use standard color coding!: ... Trailer Wiring Diagrams | etrailer.com

You don't have to install a battery isolator, but many people like the fail safe feature - it prevents your trailer from draining the car battery when you are camping. The downside is that there is a voltage drop across the device and that slows charging time. OTH you can skip the isolator, since it is super easy to just disconnect the trailer plug when you stop for the night. .... If you remember!

Both brake and battery charge wires MUST be protected by either a fuse or an auto-reset circuit breaker. For a basic setup, that is all you need in the way of extra pieces. Other than a controller.

What kind of teardrop are you buying? I am researching high end offroad teardrops for expedition type camping. So far, this fully kitted Moby1 XTR is my favorite, but the price is stratospheric:



John Davies
Spokane WA USA
 

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Discussion Starter #6
john,thank you for all the info.the teardrop i am getting is a little guy 5 wide.they do make a jeep style heavier duty and tires.back to the trailer plug:i called ziebart and they acted like they knew about the 7 wire and then as we talked they were talking a 4 pin that was plug and play that would have to stick out the hatch as you closed it.cheesy.i want it to be mount under by the hitch i put on.you know,neat.i will research your info.i am sure once i know what needs done i could probably do it as i am a retired house builder who did everything including all wiring.i'm just not a car guy but know what # 10 or whatever gauge is.its just where too tie in at and how to make the connection(type of connectors).thanks again,i really apreciate it.
 

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2012 Outback 3.6R
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If you have not purchased the trailer yet I would also recommend getting brakes on the trailer if that is possible. The brakes on cars are a little light to add a trailer. Plus if you are ever in a panic stop situation the trailer brakes may make difference if you can stop in time.
 

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'11 Outback 2.5i CVT - '06 Forester X 5MT
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Tom,

If you're looking to route the wire under the car, I would suggest buying the OEM 4 wire plug. It has a plug so you can route it through an OEM hole in the bottom of the trunk. You could then route you additional wires and attach your plug to the bottom of the car somehow.

I would suggest finding a mount that straps to the hitch.

Something like this one
http://www.draw-tite.com/content/products.aspx?lvl=2&parentid=1500&catID=1585&part=0
 

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2008 Outback 2.5i
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1,148 Posts
Ok, lets first start with what year is your Outback? Do you have an existing hitch and 4pin wiring?

For now I am assuming you do not have a hitch or 4pin wiring.

First you need a 4 pin wiring harness adapter.
2010-current
Custom Fit Vehicle Wiring for 2012 Subaru Outback Wagon - Tow Ready 118467

2006-09 (Curt allows for higher amp lights)
Custom Fit Vehicle Wiring for 2008 Subaru Outback Wagon - Curt C55370

To add 7pin wiring to an outback you will need a 4 to 7 pin wiring kit. There is no custom plug and play kits for this. The kit includes everything but wire for running the Purple reverse wire.
Universal Installation Kit forTrailer Brake Controller - 7-Way RV and 4-Way Flat - 10 Gauge Wires etrailer Accessories and Parts ETBC7

Etrailer has install videos for installing the 7pin kits for the 06-09 outbacks
Trailer Brake Controller Installation - 2006 Subaru Outback Wagon Video | etrailer.com

I would also suggest adding a brake controller. I have a 2008 and mounted Tekonsha Primus IQ to the Fuse Box door, that way I can swap the door and not have any mounting holes in the dash. I have only hit the controller 1 time, but that was when I was changing boots inside the car.
Tekonsha Primus IQ Trailer Brake Controller - 1 to 3 Axles - Proportional Tekonsha Brake Controller TK90160

I can't remember if brakes came standard on the 05 little guy offroad package but I believe all of their axles have the flanges to mount brakes. Subaru says anything over 1k needs brakes.

You will also need a hitch receiver (bolts to the car), a ball mount and a ball.
 

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2007 Outback XT Ltd
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Etrailer has install videos for installing the 7pin kits for the 06-09 outbacks
Trailer Brake Controller Installation - 2006 Subaru Outback Wagon Video | etrailer.com
That was an excellent post! I do have a couple of comments on that installation video. The guy who was doing the work was being paid a flat rate and he skipped some important steps. He doesn't care, because he won't have to deal with the consequences in a year or three when the system fails.

The location for the 7 pic receptacle is guaranteed to result in the driver dragging it across a steep driveway or road obstruction (see the 1:39 shot). It should NOT be the lowest thing in the back of the car! I can't say where to put it, but it must not act as a skid plate for the receiver.....

The connections need to be clean. He installed the white ground terminal to dirty steel using a self tapping screw. He should have cleaned the steel to bare metal, then coated the connection afterwards with liquid electrical tape to prevent corrosion and loss of contact. ALL the other connections outside of the cabin need to be environmentally sealed, either by using special waterproof terminals, heat shrink tubing or that liquid tape.



I personally have a problem with just stringing the high current wires under the car with a few zip ties. They need to be very secure, and also protected from road damage using split loom, preferably in a bright color so a tech will see it easily if he is working under the car. The last thing you want is for him to pinch an "always hot" wire with his tools.

If you take the time to do it right the first time, the odds of having wiring problems later drop to near zero. But don't forget to seal up the connections on the new trailer! They will also be of poor quality and completely exposed to the elements - typical RV garbage, guaranteed to fail.

John Davies
Spokane WA USA.
 

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I have the same comments about the video. And seeing how the trailer dealer wired my 08 it appears to be the stranded industry pratice.

The installed zipped tied my power line to the bottom of the frame rail.
I think I might rerun my power line inside the car to reduce the changes of ripping the line off.

When my dad ripped all of the wiring our of the travel trailer that was 5 years old he used the liquid tape and the current owner 10 years later still doesn't have any electrical issues.

I think the RV industry is stuck in the 1970s. Based on the wiring practices and interior designs.
 

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has anyone ever added a 7 pin trailer plug? if so did you do it or have it done? also if you did it was it able to be plugged in somehow to other pigtails.looking for any info on this.the 7 pin has 1 line that is to charge the 12 volt battery on the teardrop camper.any thing would be apreciated.thanks
All the electrical work I've done on our Boat I wouldn't bother trying to set up the little tear drop to get charged by the light weight car system. Stick with a simple trailer brake and standard light wiring for the car and trailer.

Add a nice solar panel and charger to the roof of the Tear drop.

But before you get worried about power lets talk about how long you see your self using the trailer in a single stretch and what exactly regarding electrical devices do you see your self using? The reason I ask is because nothing addresses power needs better than decent battery capacity. Our 28ft 8000lb sailboat with 10 power hungry interior lights and a number of even more power hungry mast lights - anchor light etc. Plus a 15inch LCD TV can spend a whole weekend off the grid on two group 31 batteries and still have lots of juice to fire up the diesel to go home. The 34foot boat we race to Hawaii from SF we run a single 42inch ish by roughly 34inches solar panel which actually generates enough power to run our basic instruments all day and contribute charge juice to the house battery.

One thing about solar power - have a nice cover made for the panel given they generate power even when you may not want them producing power. Example trailer parked some place outside while not being used - cover the panel to avoid causing system issues - over charging etc.

For a little tear drop rig I would go with a single Group31 battery in a proper battery box with a solar panel on the roof I don't see any reason why I would even bother with trying to find a way to get charge power off the Subaru.
 

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Given the dry curb weight of 970lbs before options are added (add about 30lbs for the battery option), and the max GCVWR is 2200lbs, brakes might be required by the state anyways. And Subaru says trailer over 1000lbs needs brakes.

Oh, if you are getting the off road version of the 5 wide the dry weight is around 1300lbs.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
lots of good info here.i will be towing longer distances.i did call and go 6 wide and brakes.they tried to talk me out of it saying they pull with subaru and feel you do not need the brakes.i found a shop next rv wholesalers at indian lake ohio who the rv place sends people to.he was very knowledgable and is going to do it and put on hitch.he said he has to do little research on every different vehicle to figure out if certain electronics could be affected and this will tell him about any isolators or diodes things i didnt really get.main thing is you can tell he is very conscincious .subaru didnt have a clue.thanks all:29:
 

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lots of good info here.i will be towing longer distances.i did call and go 6 wide and brakes.they tried to talk me out of it saying they pull with subaru and feel you do not need the brakes.i found a shop next rv wholesalers at indian lake ohio who the rv place sends people to.he was very knowledgable and is going to do it and put on hitch.he said he has to do little research on every different vehicle to figure out if certain electronics could be affected and this will tell him about any isolators or diodes things i didnt really get.main thing is you can tell he is very conscincious .subaru didnt have a clue.thanks all:29:
Tom for sure the good shops do lots of research into the electrical system which is a must given our cars today are rolling computers and power issues can give you some major heart burn and vehicle issues if its not done right.

I don't like trailer brakes always found them to be a major pain in the ass but 99% of those were all boat trailers that saw salt water. For RV trailers going with a nice brake system never hurts and will make the long trips more enjoyable. So good call there

Hey when you get it set up report back on the power set up - the things using power and how they did the power feed to charge the house battery on the trailer.
 

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If you go with a good proportional inertia controller like the Prodigy P3 or P2 you will have no problems and will be glad you have the trailer brakes. When the controller is set up correct you will probably never know the trailer is there with normal braking. Do not let anyone talk you into saving $50 with a cheap time based controller.
 

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Has anyone had any luck installing a 7 pin connector and/or brake controller on a 2013 with Eyesight? I called my dealer's maintenance department but they are clueless. I have a call in to Subaru but have not heard back yet.

Thanks
 

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2013 Outback 3.6R Ltd- Nav, Eyesight, HK, Graphite Gray Metallic
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I don't know what year and model you have, but for my '13 OB there are seven wires already connected to the back by Subaru, and one of them is full time hot via fuse #1. The harness I purchased has a four wire connector on the end, but if you test the wires coming in to the stock trailer hitch connector, you may find most everything you need.

Also, I pulled +12 from the fuse box in front by fishing a wire along the left side of the car, but inside the cabin under the floor. That's a lot safer and more reliable than having a wire outside, IMO.
 

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I had Torklift in Washington install a hidden hitch and wire for an electric brake for my 2013 CVT OB. They did a great job. Where I live in California, I could not get anyone to give me a complete definite price as the 7 wire brake receptacle install is actually complex. I have the Prodigy brake controller and pull a 1350 lb. Chalet poptop. You might consider one of these as they have great clearance, as does the A-liner line of trailers (who also make an off-road version). If you are going to spend any really time camping with at least one other person, a rigid insulated poptop is the way to go especially in cold, very hot, or inclement weather such as Canada or for skiing, desert, etc. I have used my Chalet in Mammoth and pulled it with my precious Subaru in heavy snow. The smaller tear drop trailers are nice for a few nights, but IMO are extremely expensive, are hard to find used, have limited room, etc. Whereas, you can find a used Chalet or A-liner in the $5,000 range and they actually have great clearance (over 12" stock) I have pulled mine off road without problems on class 2-3 roads. The smaller off road trailers are really made for pulling into more severe off road trips )3+ roads, usually with a Land Cruiser, Xterra Jeep type vehicle. These small trailers have been really developed for use in Australia by offroaders and there is a great RV magazine which shows all the Australian versions which cost up to $30,000.
 
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